How designers stay inspired during a global pandemic

Like many others, I’ve spent the better part of the past six months stuck at home in mundane repetition while witnessing growing political unrest and constant climate catastrophes. After the pandemic struck earlier this year, thinkPARALLAX, like other companies, embraced a permanent distributed-working model. Those on our team who worked out of our humble, beachside Encinitas headquarters are now acclimating to a reality where work rhythms including office small talk, beach runs, and happy hours have disappeared. While losing these luxuries is minor in comparison to our collective global struggle, we’re challenged with finding new work routines and ways to stay inspired for the foreseeable future.

And there’s no better team than our designers to show how this can come to fruition. Normally fueled by flowing creativity and face-to-face collaboration, the pandemic has forced them to find different paths to inspiration. Here’s how some of them work to keep the creative flame alive during these less than normal times.

Kyrstin Nihill, Art Director

Medium: Watercolor and watercolor pencil

Being in a state of flow means being immersed in the moment—in that place between thoughts where time disappears—and I thoroughly enjoy whatever I am doing. This design represents playfulness. When working on this painting, I disconnected from the outcome and enjoyed the act of making.

 

Etah Chen, Graphic Designer

Medium: Lettering

I have been fascinated by letters since I was a child and can express myself very well using letterforms. For me, this pandemic has been a blessing in disguise. Many opportunities emerged during these times. Many creatives have been hustling and it’s been inspiring to see that. My image is an expression of beauty within uncertain times.

Edison Miclat, Design Director

Medium: Cardboard cutout, animated Gif

Curiosity lets you wander either physically or mentally. To be inquisitive is to allow your mind to explore the relationship between things around you to yourself. To be curious is to have infinite inspiration. Reusing a cardboard cutout as my “microscope” to observe the world around me, I question things like: why I think soap suds can resemble a galaxy, why colors and patterns can change a mood or feeling, why stories can form from the layers of rock formations, and why the sunlight in the pool would dance with the waves. Your relationship with things around you is unique to you. Stay curious.

Our designer’s resilience and relentless pursuit of creativity keep the whole thinkPARALLAX team inspired. We hope this project offered the same to you.